Genre: Literary Fiction
Two Natures is the coming-of-age story of Julian Selkirk, a fashion photographer in New York City in the early 1990s. His faith in Jesus helped him survive his childhood in the Atlanta suburbs with an abusive alcoholic father, but the church’s condemnation of his sexual orientation has left him alienated and ashamed. Yearning for new ideals to anchor him after his loss of faith, Julian seeks his identity through love affairs with three very different men: tough but childish Phil Shanahan, a personal trainer who takes a dangerous shortcut to success; enigmatic, cosmopolitan Richard Molineux, the fashion magazine editor who gives him his first big break; and Peter Edelman, an earnest left-wing activist with a secret life. Amid the devastation of the AIDS epidemic and the racial tensions of New York politics, Julian learns to see beyond surface attractions and short-term desires, and to use his art to serve his community.
From the Book
“Have you ever wanted to step into a picture so you could taste blue water, hear the music of the wind-swept clouds, feel diamond-flecked sand against your soles? Most of the time the picture is better, your added senses dulling one another like too many conversations in a room. It’s the reason so many myths connect sight and punishment. Beauty lies about where it comes from.”
Jendi Reiter is an award-winning author whose books include the novel Two Natures (Saddle Road Press, 2016) and the poetry collection Bullies in Love (Little Red Tree Publishing, 2015). Jendi’s poetry and fiction are guided by her belief that people take precedence over ideologies. In exploring themes of queer family life, spiritual integration, and healing from adverse childhood experiences, her goal is to create understanding that leads to social change. Writing awards include the 2016 New Letters Prize for Fiction and a Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist’s Fellowship. She is the editor of WinningWriters.com, an online resource site for creative writers. Visit her blog at http://www.jendireiter.com and follow her on Twitter @JendiReiter .
PRAISE FOR TWO NATURES:
*2016 Rainbow Awards: First Prize, Best Gay Contemporary Fiction; First Runner-Up, Debut Gay Book
*Named one of QSpirit’s Top LGBTQ Christian Books of 2016
*2016 Lascaux Prize in Fiction Finalist
*2017 National Indie Excellence Award Finalist
“It’s rare to discover within a gay love story an equally-powerful undercurrent of political and spiritual examination. Too many gay novels focus on evolving sexuality or love and skim over underlying religious values systems; but one of the special attributes of Two Natures isn’t just its focus on duality, but its intense revelations about what it means to be both Christian and gay.” —Midwest Book Review
“Julian touches the underbelly of New York City, and we are witness to it. Reiter does a great job of bringing the city, and all of her locales to life… Reiter does exactly what I like in a book, she lets me walk as the character. I am Julian as he struggles against the traditions of his family and the calling of his own soul. I feel his turmoil as he moves through this time in his life and I feel his heart break, along with his joy… People are people, regardless of their trappings, we all want the same things of lives, to be safe, to know love, to be accepted. You will cheer for Julian in his triumphs, you will weep for him in his despair. You will know him.” —Gallion Picks Reviews (AngieGallion.com)
“Jendi has built a great world within these pages. It is heart-breaking and yet satisfying in the end. It is a well done, well-written book, one that will leave you wanting more out of it. The protagonists, as well as all the people involved within the pages, are quite likable and the reader is simply involved as part of the story.” —2016 Rainbow Awards judges’ report